Community Health Worker (CHW) Initiative Launched In New Hampshire

Community Health Worker (CHW) Initiative Launched In New Hampshire




Community Health Worker (CHW) Initiative Launched In New Hampshire

North Country Health Consortium Works With Partners to Improve Health Outcomes In the State

Littleton, NH, Feb. 26, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The state of New Hampshire has provided funding to North Country Health Consortium (NCHC) to spearhead a statewide initiative to increase access to Community Health Workers (CHWs). This workforce is an often overlooked but critical liaison between health care and social services providers and individuals in the community, helping to improve health outcomes particularly for seniors and others who experience barriers to care.

CHWs are trained professionals in the community who work to coordinate social and health services for individuals, often connecting people to basic needs like food and housing. They empower patients and clients to make choices that improve individual health and wellbeing. Studies show that CHWs not only reduce the burden on providers, but also decrease health care costs, demonstrating a return (ROI) of up to $3 for every $1 spent.

 “CHWs are integrated at Harbor Care Health & Wellness Center through referrals from our providers and community partners. They assist patients and community members by applying for health insurance and finding needed resources,” said Magna Krieger, Director of Community Health Services at Harbor Care Health & Wellness Center in Nashua.

“Additionally, CHWs are involved in our patients’ chronic care as health coaches, assisting them in addressing social drivers of health conditions, thus allowing them to focus on becoming and staying healthy. Through partnerships with our patients and providers, we can serve them in the areas they need the most help,” explained Krieger.

NCHC is working with several partners regionally to implement the CHW-NH initiative including New Hampshire Community Health Worker Coalition, New Hampshire Nurse Practitioner Association, Southern New Hampshire Area Health Education Center (AHEC) and Community Workforce Institute, Bi-State Primary Care Association, Dartmouth Hitchcock, regional public health organizations and other stakeholders through a CHW Statewide Workforce group. The initiative provides CHW training, works to build a sustainable CHW workforce and engages with stakeholders to develop CHW certification and support statewide data collection. For example, Community Workforce Institute is currently facilitating a free, four-part monthly training series for providers to effectively integrate CHWs into their practice

This CHW initiative supports New Hampshire’s goals – consistent with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) mandate – to support healthier people and improve outcomes by integrating CHWs into health and social systems to supplement provider care, decrease health care costs, and improve health and wellbeing particularly for marginalized and/or socioeconomically disadvantaged populations and racial and ethnic minority groups.

About NCHC and the CHW Initiative

The North Country Health Consortium (NCHC) is a non-profit public health organization that collaborates with health and human services providers and healthcare providers to improve health and wellness in New Hampshire. For more information about the Community Health Worker (CHW) initiative, go to https://nhchw.org/chws-nh/.

Funding for the CHW initiative is financed under a contract with the State of New Hampshire, Department of Health and Human Services with funds supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award by CDC/HHS “NH Initiative to address COVID-19 Health Disparities grant #NH750T000031”. The content of this release does not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement by, CDC/HHS or the U.S. Government.”

CONTACT: Michelle Morel, President
Confocal Communications
michelle@confocalcommunications.com | (207) 329-6767